One of the interesting elements in NBase-T networking is how and when companies are releasing new multi-gig 2.5G+5G+10G controllers to the market. This week Buffalo lifted the lid their newest card, which is using a unique controller implementation we’ve not seen in the wild before.

The LGY-PCIE-MG expansion card is a PCIe 2.0 x4 card designed for commercial systems with a standard RJ-45 port but capable of 1G, 2.5G, 5G and 10G networking connectivity. The key part of the card, the MAC and PHY, comes from a combination of a Tahuti Networks TN4010 multi-speed MAC and Marvell’s Alaska M 88E2180 PHY. Up until this point, any multi-gig Base-T working implementation has been using Aquantia solutions, or we’ve recently seen Realtek controllers for 2.5G, but now we have a true second player in the multi-gig space. The Marvell controller was actually announced back in May 2017, so it seems there has been a long lead time before coming to market. The obvious players missing from this set are Broadcom, Qualcomm, and Intel.

The Buffalo LGY-PCIE-MG card is designed to work with operating systems from Windows 7 and up, as well as Windows Server 2012 and up. Power consumption is listed in the specification sheet at 6.1W, and has an operating temperature window of 0-55C (which seems low?). The RRP of the card is £155 (UK), which is substantially higher than current Aquantia solutions on the market, which are around £100.

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  • MajGenRelativity - Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - link

    It'd be more interesting if it was price competitive. Hopefully, increased competition in this space will push prices down in the future Reply
  • AdditionalPylons - Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - link

    +1 Reply
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - link

    Assuming their upstream prices are too high to do so, I'd expect market pressure to pull the retail price down to around the Aquantia price in relatively little time. Reply
  • Eletriarnation - Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - link

    The operating temperature seems reasonable enough if we're talking about "what ambient conditions can this chip be run in" and not "what temperature is the chip itself allowed to reach." Comparing to enterprise gear, a Nexus 9000 lists 0-40C as the acceptable range. Reply
  • PeachNCream - Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - link

    Yes, that's ambient air temp, not component temp. The interior of the system where the NIC is installed should remain below 55C. Reply
  • BillyONeal - Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - link

    Should read "Buffalo rebrands Aquantia AQN-107 (or AQC-107)" Reply
  • BillyONeal - Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - link

    Erm, that's what I get before reading the article :(. Not Aquantia -- Marvell's chip! Reply
  • iwod - Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - link

    I wonder which chip is better? Marvell? Reply
  • brunis.dk - Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - link

    I think a 2.5/5g shootout is in order!! Reply

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